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CULT OF LUNA
CULT OF LUNA
Somewhere Along The Highway
(Earache Records)
64:46min

Ah, well... so here it is, the new CULT OF LUNA album. Highly anticipated I can imagine, for CULT OF LUNA have been hyped quite alot since their debut on Earache Records. Overrated? Yes, what their new efford "Somewhere Along The Highway" very well proofs. But let me take the detour before we get on the highway: I do not know which band was first playing this type of music, whose greatest representatives are among others NEUROSIS, BREACH and ISIS, to name the best known acts. They began mixing the extremes of quiet and almost peaceful sounds with brutal and aggressive eruptions in epic and visionary songs: sometimes monotonously hammering, noisy, dark and hateful, with screaming and grunting vocals full of anger, creating an atmosphere of wrath, despair, darkness and sorrow. NEUROSIS startet as an apocalyptic warmachine (their album "Through Silver In Blood" is one of the darkest and nihilistic albums I have ever heard) but later got more quiet, more wise, back to earth. Same with ISIS, who became more spherical, with a cleaner sound and sometimes clean vocals and a slight rock touch. It is not important how you would like to name a genre für these bands, be it Deathcore (as Earache calls CULT OF LUNA's music), Noiserock, Apocalyptic Doom or whatever - the important thing as a creator of such music is to transform all your feelings directly into your music during monstrous jam-sessions, without analyzing it first. And that exactly is the problem with CULT OF LUNA: neither their self-titled debut, nor their second album "The Beyond" (their hyped debut on Earache) or this new album are able to grip me in any way. Everything just sounds too calculated and emotionless. It is as if they are following rules "how to write a Deathcore-song": when does the clean part has to finish? How long is the aggressive part? When can I scream and how often? Lights on, lights off, orgasm after 3 min, please... The vocals just seem to be there for the sake of having them at all, they appear to be hollow. No flow, no life. Maybe 7 bandmembers is too much for a band like this? Too much compromises? Who knows. CULT OF LUNA is not a shit band, nor is their music bad. They are just too cold and heartless for this music. On "The Beyond" they sounded like an analytic version of ISIS. With "Somewhere..." there are some hints of promising and original ideas. The titletrack eg. sounds like a NEIL YOUNG version from his "Dead Man" soundtrack played by EARTH (but not as good of course) - and that is their best track, with much feeling and a great atmosphere. Here and there you get a touch of GODSPEED YOU BLACK EMPEROR or newer ANATHEMA, which is quiet interesting, still not yet convincing. There are still some aggressive parts with Deathcore screams, but CULT OF LUNA got more quiet on this release... like a rose that turned to stone, which by the way is the frontcover-motive for "Somewhere..." and to this I just have no comment!! Thanx for your time folks! www.cultofluna.com, www.earache.com

Tim Klöcker

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